Frozen turkey
Here's Precisely When To Take Your Thanksgiving Turkey Out Of The Freezer
Taking a Thanksgiving turkey out of the freezer and safely defrosting it requires days of planning. It’s best to allocate 24 hours of thawing time for every four pounds of turkey.
That means a turkey weighing between 16 and 20 pounds will require four to five days to fully thaw. One that's larger than 20 pounds will require between five and six days.
Once it’s out of the freezer, defrost your turkey in the refrigerator at 40 degrees Fahrenheit or lower. You can also defrost your turkey more quickly in cold water.
Place the turkey in a resealable bag and cover it with cold water in the sink, changing the water every 30 minutes to ensure the temperature doesn’t go above 40 degrees Fahrenheit.
This method will take 30 minutes per pound, totaling around eight hours for a fully frozen 16-pound bird, but the safest way to defrost a turkey remains using the refrigerator.